We’re eagerly awaiting Guardians of the Galaxy‘s August 1st arrival (or, you know, midnight on July 31st), but in the meantime James Gunn and Zoe Saldana have revealed some of the inspirations behind the film that resuscitated B.J. Thomas’ career.
Speaking to Superhero Hype, director James Gunn said that after reading an early draft of the script, Whedon empowered him to use the unique directorial voice that he brought to Slither and Super:
…and he [Whedon] was like “Well I really loved this and this is great, and the story’s been cracked, but you know I just really want there to be more ‘James Gunn’ in a script. There’s things that are too conventional and I want more James Gunn in it.” […] and I was like, ‘All right, your funeral.’ Then went home and I swear to God, I wrote a a 7-page scene where the guys are in the spaceship arguing about something and it’s all dialogue.
Marvel has gained a reputation recently for policing unique directorial visions (cough cough Edward Wright cough), so it’s reassuring to hear that Whedon, at least, is on board with eccentricity. Gunn wasn’t the only member of the Galaxy gang who struggled to find a voice during the early creative process—Zoe Saldana told SlashFilm that greening out for Gamora came with surprising insecurities:
…what I was thinking was, “She just needs to be pretty.” And that’s usually a thing that I don’t think about with other characters that I play but for some reason because I was going to be green and I was going to be the lead girl, I just wanted teenage boys to find me attractive.[…] Teenage boys, please. We gotta get their vote.
Saldana has said in the past that she enjoys science fiction because its female characters are less likely to be pigeon-holed as love interests than in other genres, so it’s a little jarring that she was so concerned about Gamora meeting stereotypical beauty standards (particularly standards designed to appeal to the always-nuanced teenage eye). In the full interview, Saldana explains that it took months before she found the strength and beauty inherent in Gamora’s individuality. As a struggle many of us are familiar with, that should certainly be interesting to see on screen.
Just three more weeks to wait, Starlords and Starladies!